Catholic faithful from Kitui County presented Archbishop-elect Anthony Muheria to Nyeri Archdiocese where he is set to take over as head.
Bishop Muheria was received by his predecessor Archbishop Peter Kairu at Miiri Catholic Church on the border between Nyeri and Kirinyaga Counties in a ceremony that attracted thousands of faithful.
The ceremony marked the end of Bishop Muheria’s tenure as bishop of Kitui ahead of his installation as Archbishop of Nyeri tomorrow.
It was an emotional ceremony for both sets of faithful with some Kitui faithful unable to hold back tears while the Nyeri ones cheered joyfully.
While receiving his successor, Archbishop Kairo expressed joy, saying that he is satisfied he had served his part and that it was time to pass the baton.
“It is an amazing feeling and am very happy to receive a successor. But it does not mean that I will not continue working for the church. My service will not end,” Archbishop Kairo said.
Upon reaching retirement age of 75 in September last year, Archbishop Kairo tendered his resignation to Pope Francis ending his eight years as the head of the Nyeri Archdiocese.
In April, the Pope appointed Bishop Muheria to take over the church in Nyeri.
Bishop Muheria today hailed his predecessor’s legacy noting that he had big shoes to fill and would rely on Archbishop Kairo for guidance.
“I am excited because this is a big day for the church. And mzee is still with us so I will be seeking guidance from him,” Bishop Muheria said.
During his address, the incoming archbishop criticised Kenyans for failure to elect good leaders.
He said Kenyans elect leaders who have no values.
He also blamed leaders for the high cost of living being experienced in the country accusing them of neglecting their electorate.
“We need to regain our consciousness during this election year. Leaders should stop focusing on their own gain and serve those who put them in office.
“Kenyans should also learn to demand accountability from their leaders,” he said.
Tomorrow Archbishop Kairo will celebrate his last Eucharistic mass as archbishop as he relinquishes power to his successor in an installation mass.
During the mass to be held at the Christ the King Major Seminary, Archbishop Kairo will officially hand over the staff of office to Bishop Muheria’s to mark the start of tenure as the head of the church in the Mt Kenya region.